Hugh Laurie Thriller ‘Masterpiece: Roadkill’ Heads Up December PBS DVD Releases

The Hugh Laurie thriller “Masterpiece: Roadkill,” season two of “Great Performances: Now Hear This” and a duo of “Nova” programs are among the titles coming to DVD from PBS Distribution in December.

The new political thriller “Roadkill” from Academy Award nominee David Hare (The Reader, The Hours) comes out on DVD Dec. 15. The series stars Laurie as Peter Laurence, a self-made forceful and charismatic politician. Peter’s public and private life seem to be falling apart — or rather are being picked apart by his enemies. As his personal revelations spiral, he is shamelessly untroubled by guilt or remorse, expertly walking a high wire between glory and catastrophe as he seeks to further his own agenda, while others plot to bring him down. However, events show just how hard it is, for both an individual and a country, to leave the past behind. Helen McCrory (The Queen, “Harry Potter”), Sidse Babett Knudsen (“Westworld, Inferno) and Millie Brady (“The Last Kingdom,” Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) also star.

Season two of “Great Performances: Now Hear This” is due Dec. 1. Viewers join Scott Yoo, renowned violinist and conductor of the Mexico City Philharmonic, in a four-part documentary miniseries that merges music, storytelling, travel and culture, as Yoo chases the secret histories of some of the greatest music ever written.

Also coming Dec. 1 is Nova: Human Nature, a feature-length film exploring the science, history, and ethics of a revolutionary gene-editing technology and its applications.

American Masters: Keith Haring — Street Art Boy is a biographical documentary coming out Dec. 8. International art sensation Keith Haring blazed a trail through the legendary art scene of 1980s New York and revolutionized the worlds of pop culture and fine art. Haring’s message targeted the underlying threat of violence, sexual exploitation and political oppression. His art was shown in more than 100 group and solo exhibitions during his lifetime and he continues to be celebrated today.

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Also due Dec. 8 are Nova: Secret Mind of Slime and Secrets of Royal Travel. Nova: Secret Mind of Slime explores the questions and science behind the “intelligence” of slime molds. These creatures are not animals, nor plants, nor fungi, yet they appear to learn and to make decisions without brains, expanding the boundaries of intelligence beyond the animal kingdom. Secrets of Royal Travel tells the inside story of the monarchy on the move, taking viewers inside some of the most famous, yet exclusive, transport systems around the globe with select interviews of royal staff.

Coming Dec. 15 is The Queen and the Coup, a documentary about the happenings in February 1953, the first anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, during which she is about to be deployed in a U.S. plot to topple Iran’s last democratic leader in favor of an all-powerful Shah.

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Finally, Dec. 22 comes Nova: A to Z — The First Alphabet and How Writing Changed the World. The documentary explores the history of writing. Just as writing changed the course of human history, the evolution of paper and printing revolutionized the spread of information. While the invention of paper boosted Chinese and Islamic societies, the simple fact that the Latin alphabet could be printed using a small number of discrete, repetitive symbols helped popularize moveable type, handing Europe a crucial advantage at the beginning of the Renaissance. The printing press itself kicked off the scientific revolution that fast-tracked us to the current digital age.

New Hugh Laurie Series ‘Roadkill’ Among Titles Coming to PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel in November

Six new programs, including a new political thriller starring Hugh Laurie, “Roadkill,” Prince Philip: The Plot to Make a King and season one of “Jekyll and Hyde,” will be streaming on the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel in November.

Also streaming are international programs from “Walter Presents,” including the new Spanish crime thriller “Under Suspicion,” “The Hunter” and “Berlin Dance School.”

The subscription rate for the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel is $5.99 per month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription.

Due Nov. 1 is the new political thriller “Roadkill” from Academy Award nominee David Hare (The Reader, The Hours). The series stars Hugh Laurie as Peter Laurence, a self-made forceful and charismatic politician. Peter’s public and private life seem to be falling apart — or rather are being picked apart by his enemies. As his personal revelations spiral, he is shamelessly untroubled by guilt or remorse, expertly walking a high wire between glory and catastrophe as he seeks to further his own agenda, while others plot to bring him down. However, events show just how hard it is, for both an individual and a country, to leave the past behind. Helen McCrory (The Queen, “Harry Potter”), Sidse Babett Knudsen (“Westworld, Inferno) and Millie Brady (“The Last Kingdom,” Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) also star.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Coming Nov. 6 is season two of the “Walter Presents” series “The Hunter.” In the Italian crime drama set in January 1996, after years of waiting, arrests and sleepless nights, anti-mafia prosecutor Saverio is over the moon. Not only has he finally married the love of his life Giada, he’s also closer to catching his most wanted prey: Giovanni Brusca. The brutal head of the Cosa Nostra has held the son of one of his enemies hostage for over two years. Even though the boy is still alive, he’s just a pawn in a sick game of thrones played by the Brusca brothers. When things go wrong during Saverio’s long-planned raid of the Brusca hideout, his life starts falling apart before his eyes.

Due Nov. 13 is the “Walter Presents” Spanish crime thriller “Under Suspicion.” In the series, on the day of her first communion, surrounded by her family, 7-year-old Alicia Vega disappears without a trace. After two weeks of searching, the police are only sure about one thing: Alicia’s kidnapper is a family member. Two officers, Laura and Víctor, are chosen to go undercover in the town where the Vega family lives as a married couple to uncover who is responsible for the crime. They don’t know each other and are complete opposites. Laura is firm and organized. Víctor is impulsive and willing to do whatever is necessary to discover the truth. As time passes, the case turns out to be more complicated than they expected — the Vega family is a web of secrets complicating the rescue of Alicia.

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Season two of the “Walter Presents” German drama “Berlin Dance School,” due Nov. 27, continues to follow the proprietor of the Galant dance school, Caterina Schollack and her three daughters, Monika, Eva and Helga. Three years have passed and Monika is now a single mother fighting for custody of her daughter Dorli who is living with her aunt Helga and her husband Wolfgang as a way to hide his homosexuality. Meanwhile, the careers of Monika and her dance partner Freddy pick up speed under the stewardship of Caterina’s management. Their sister Eva is also unhappy in her marriage to Professor Fassbender. The program follows the three sisters as they search for their own new identity, while dealing with issues such as emancipation, family structures and the desire for female self-determination.

Also coming Nov. 27 is Prince Philip: The Plot to Make a King. The film tells the inside story of the tensions that were unleashed when the queen fell in love with Prince Philip — tensions that would place huge strain on the royal marriage and would shape the future of Elizabeth’s reign. Young Philip, it was felt, was “rough, ill-mannered, uneducated and would probably not be faithful,” according to one courtier. The royal and political elite disliked his German roots — and they disliked his larger than life, ferociously ambitious uncle Lord Louis Mountbatten. This film draws on unpublished memoirs to show how Philip and Mountbatten were maneuvering for a royal marriage as early as the winter of 1939-40, when the queen was just 13. Philip’s German links were a source of anxiety for Elizabeth’s parents with the queen’s mother reported to have privately referred to Philip as “The Hun.” The film reveals, for the first time, the complexities and frustrations of the royal marriage as the queen struggled to reconcile the love of her husband with the suspicions of her family and her government.

Finally, Nov. 30 comes season one of “Jekyll and Hyde.” Set in 1930s London, the series follows Robert Jekyll, a naive, sensitive young man finding his place in the world and moving away from the protection of his loving foster parents. As he begins to feel himself coming under the power of a darkness he cannot control, he realizes that all this time his parents were protecting him from his true self. Jekyll has inherited the curse of his grandfather, and when angered or in danger he undertakes a graphic and twisted transformation to become Hyde, a shadowy, brooding figure of incredible strength and agility — confident and fearless. As he tries to discover his past and search for a cure, Robert Jekyll is drawn deep into Hyde’s world of monstrous creatures and freaks of nature.